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About Us

RHUL Founders Building

The English department offers both Single Honours English Literature, and Joint Honours in English and Creative Writing and English and American Literature. We also run a variety of Joint Honours programmes based on our strong links with other departments in the Arts Faculty.

We also offer six outstanding Masters Programmes, many with flexible study options, and we invite postgraduate research students in all fields of English Literature to join our vibrant postgraduate community.

We are a friendly department with a strong tradition of pastoral care for our students. Each student is assigned a Personal Tutor who oversees their individual academic progress throughout the degree programme and can be consulted on personal as well as academic matters.

For details of our courses, please visit admissions and our pages for prospective students.

Our graduates leave with an outstanding knowledge of English Literature, and many progress to further degrees and advanced research in English and other fields.

Royal Holloway’s English graduates are also equipped with an unrivalled set of transferrable skills to enhance employment prospects for their future careers. Confident and articulate, our graduates are able to absorb and analyse large amounts of complex information, and are expert at working independently or as part of a team.

We support employability skills through a job placement scheme in year 2, the College Passport Scheme,  and the work of the Careers Service across all years.  We take students to the South Bank each year for an employability day and meetings with alumni in the creative and other industries.

Our graduates go on to achieve successful employment within an exciting range of industries, from accountancy and banking to law, media and theatre. We proudly include amongst our alumni: teachers, lawyers, stock-brokers, researchers, civil servants, journalists, actors, bankers, entrepreneurs, managers, broadcasters, administrators, and film makers, many of whom work with leading international organisations.

Research by staff in the English department commands a leading position on the global stage. In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework, we are recognised for our outstanding research environment, achieving the second highest score on this measure for work of the highest (4*) quality, with 90 per cent of our work judged to be in this 'world-leading' category.

Our academic staff are collectively committed to the common goal of sharing their expertise and ambition with all our undergraduate and postgraduate students.

Undergraduate students of English at Royal Holloway engage fully with the historical sweep of the discipline, reading literature from Beowulf to the most recent Booker prize winning novel over their three years of study. Postgraduate students on Masters and Research programmes work at the frontline of their evolving fields.

There is considerable opportunity for research students to work together at Royal Holloway, as staff and students participate in and lead a variety of reading groupsfestivals, conferences and other initiatives. The new peer-reviewed e-journal Exegesis is one of our several successful student-led projects - an exciting and innovative platform for showcasing groundbreaking research, which attests to the vitality of our student body and research culture.


More information about the department’s varied activities can be found in our Showcase.

The English department at Royal Holloway is situated on the top floor of the new prize-winning International Building, overlooking the elegant grounds of the Victorian campus in Egham.

The college also has a Central London base near the British Museum at the corner of Bedford Square and Gower Street, which is used for a wide variety of workshops and seminars. Additionally, the English Department has access to the Centre for Creative Collaboration in Kings Cross, which is frequently used for a number of seminars and workshops, as well as festivals and events including R:Fest and POLYply.

Poetic Practice Performanceinternationalbldgcrop2

Library resources on Royal Holloway’s campus are excellent, ranging from the traditional scholarly library space of the Founders building to the innovative social learning spaces and modern silent study areas in Bedford Library.

RHUL Founders BuildingLearning Space at RHUL LibraryView of the first floor of Bedford Library

Royal Holloway’s library holds more than 600,000 volumes, over 20,000 print and online journals, and around 900 study spaces. The College has recently invested around £2 million to further develop library resources and facilities, including its own dedicated LibrarySearch system. Additionally, students are able to access extensive special collections, rare books and important historical documents through Royal Holloway’s dedicated archives service.

Students are also encouraged to make use of libraries in central London, including Senate House Library and the British Library.

Exterior view of Senate House LibraryFounders Library

A number of PC labs containing a wide range of software applications are available within the Computer Centre and around campus, most of which are accessible 24 hours a day. There is a wireless network which enables access throughout most of the College. 







More details of Royal Holloway's Library facilities are available via our dedicated Library web pages.





"The most valuable thing I learnt at Royal Holloway was that great literature asks the big questions. I went from philosophy lectures, to reading history and to assessing modern politics just by studying Shakespeare, Dickens and the Romantic Poets. The combination of world-class lecturers and great texts taught me to debate, assess and question and now I work for the government. Who said the novel was dead?"

- Jess, BA English 


Click here to view information on some of our English Department Alumni.

















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